Lecture 8_Fallacies of weak induction

Lecture 8_Fallacies of weak induction - Lecture 8 Fallacies...

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Unformatted text preview: Lecture 8 Fallacies of Weak Induction Patrick Maher Philosophy 102 Spring 2009 Fallacies of weak induction In fallacies of relevance, the premises are logically irrelevant to the conclusion. Definition Fallacies of weak induction are fallacies in which the premises provide a shred of evidence in support of the conclusion, but not enough to make it reasonable to believe the conclusion. We will cover six fallacies of weak induction. Appeal to unqualified authority Definition Argument from authority: The fact that some authority has asserted X is taken to show that X is true. Appeal to unqualified authority: An argument from authority in which the cited authority is not trustworthy. The cited authority might be untrustworthy due to lacking relevant expertise. Example Dr. Bradshaw, our family physician, has stated that the creation of muonic atoms of deuterium and tritium hold the key to producing a sustained nuclear fusion reaction at room temperature. In view of Dr. Bradshaws expertise as a physician, we must conclude that this is true. The cited authority might be untrustworthy due to having a motive to lie. Example James W. Johnston, Chairman of R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, testified before Congress that tobacco is not an addictive substance and that smoking cigarettes does not produce any addiction. Therefore, we should believe him and conclude that smoking does not in fact lead to any addiction. Appeal to ignorance Definition Appeal to ignorance: The premises say that X has not been proved true and the conclusion is that X is false. Or: The premises say that X has not been proved false and the conclusion is that X is true. Examples People have been trying for centuries to provide conclusive evidence for the claims of astrology, and no one has ever succeeded. Therefore, we must conclude that astrology is a lot of nonsense....
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This note was uploaded on 02/08/2009 for the course PHIL 102 taught by Professor Weinberg during the Spring '08 term at University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign.

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Lecture 8_Fallacies of weak induction - Lecture 8 Fallacies...

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